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Reflecting on the past: HEUNI's pioneering studies on migrant worker exploitation and trafficking

13.3.2024 | News item

HEUNI’s first study on exploitation of migrant workers and trafficking in persons for the purpose of forced labour was published in 2011 and the second study in 2013. These reports, titled "Work on Any Terms" and "We’ve Got People Lined Up Behind the Door," were conducted under EU-funded projects focusing on Finland and neighboring countries. They aimed to uncover the extent of exploitation, assess potential cases of trafficking for forced labor, identify affected economic sectors, and evaluate preventive measures.

Despite the passage of over a decade, the research findings remain pertinent, highlighting persistent forms of exploitation and ongoing challenges. Nevertheless, notable changes and advancements have occurred in the intervening years.

We believe that the HEUNI studies were instrumental in increasing the understanding of labour exploitation and trafficking for forced labour in Finland.  Widely circulated and even cited in judicial proceedings related to human trafficking, they have become essential references in the field. Originally released as part of a compilation, these reports are now being relaunched as standalone publications in English, with the aim of reaching a broader international audience.

Through this renewed effort, HEUNI seeks to extend the impact of its research, fostering greater understanding and collaboration in combating human exploitation worldwide.

Human trafficking Labour exploitation